Named 2016 Male Athlete of the Year in 40-49 age group

Eric Cole — a graduate of Bangs High School and Angelo State University where he won two national championships, one in the discus and one in the hammer — competed at the USATF Outdoor National Championships July 13-16 in Baton Rouge, Louisiana.

Cole won the hammer (51.7 meters), discus (47.61 meters), shot put (12.81 meters) and 35-pound weight throw (16.26 meters) competitions, and finished fifth in the javelin (37.29 meters).

At the awards banquet on July 15, Cole was named Male Athlete of the Year for 2016 in the 40-49 year age group. In 2016, Cole set the American record in the throwers pentathalon, which consists of the discus, hammer, shot put, 35-pound weight and javelin.

The distance thrown earns points from a predetermined chart. The points from the five throws are the pentathlon total, and his total points broke the American record.

Cole also broke the super weight pentathlon American record. The super weight pentathlon consists of the 35-pound, 56-pound, 98-pound, 200-pound, and 300-pound weights.

During the Indoor National Championships in Albuquerque in February 2017, Cole set the American record in the 56-pound weight throw and won first place in the shot put and 35-pound weight throw.